Why the Confederacy Lost Essay

This essay has a total of 945 words and 4 pages.

Why the Confederacy Lost



Why the Confederacy Lost

Throughout history many historians have tried to put their finger on the exact reason for
the Confederacy losing the war. Some historians blame the head of the confederacy
Jefferson Davis, however others believe that it was the shear numbers of the Northern army
that won out. Yet others have blamed almost every general that the Confederacy had,
according to James M. McPherson:

Among them Robert E. Lee himself for mismanagement, overconfidence, and poor judgment; Jeb
Stuart for riding off an a raid around the Union army and losing contact with his own
army, leaving Lee blind in the enemy’s country; Richard Ewell and Jubal Early for failing
to attack Cemetery Hill on the afternoon of July 1st and again for tardiness in attacking
on the 2nd; and above all, James Longstreet for lack of cooperation, promptness, and vigor
in the assaults of July 2nd and 3rd.(P.19).


Hopefully, this paper will shed some light on the true reasons for the Confederacy losing the war.
There are two categories that interpretations can fall under, one is internal- internal is
looking only at the south, what they did right and what they did wrong. The next one is
external-external is looking at both the North and the South, seeing the problems and the
successes of both sides. For and example of an external explanation, when Pickett was
asked what he thought was the reason for the Confederacy losing the Battle of Gettysburg
he said, “ I’ve always thought the Yankees had something to do with it” (19).

The idea that the Yankees had way too many resources, has long been an explanation for the
reason of the Confederacy losing the war. When Robert E. Lee gave his farewell address at
Appomattox he said to his soldiers, “ The Army of Northern Virginia has been compelled to
yield to overwhelming numbers and resources” (20). That statement was very important to
the South because, it allowed them, and still allows them to keep pride in their efforts
as fighters during the war. It tells that they lost not due to the fact that they could
not fight, but because they were outnumbered and out gunned.

The African American support on the Northern side was a large help and a huge hindering
for the South. At the beginning of the war even Northern soldiers were slightly
apprehensive about letting black soldiers fight for the North. A Connecticut infantry man
was asked what he thought about blacks fighting for the North and he said “I think drove
of hogs would do better brought down here for we could eat them and nigers we can’t”
(148). As the war was dragging on and on many of the minds of the soldiers changed, they
wanted any advantage that they could get to win the war. When Lincoln created the
Emancipation Proclamation the North rejoiced. The Emancipation created a boost to the
moral and support in the North because people were riding so high on the Emancipation.
Continues for 2 more pages >>




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